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All photos by Ray Toh

Plumes of red, white and blue smoke and the whooshing sounds of nine Hawk fast-jets filled Qatar’s skies yesterday, as the UK’s Red Arrows performed over the Corniche.

The pilots represent the public face of the UK’s Royal Air Force.

They returned to Doha for the first time in four years as part of a Gulf tour that aims to strengthen trade ties between countries.

According to the UK Embassy in Doha, the jets sometimes flew as close as six feet apart at more than 400 miles per hour during the 20-minute show.

Qatar Airways also got in on the action, with one of its Airbus 350s flying with the jets after the official show to mark the airline’s 20th anniversary.

In a statement, Ambassador Ajay Sharma said:

“I am delighted to have been able to welcome the Red Arrows to Qatar. Such visits are a very visible demonstration and celebration of the strength of UK-Qatar relations. They showcase the best of the UK from the technical mastery of the pilots to the excellence of our engineering and aviation industry.”

Online reaction

Thousands of Qatar residents flocked outside to check out the display. Here’s some of what the saw:

Did you catch the show? Thoughts?

With reporting from Reem Saad

Thousands of people flocked to the Corniche last night to express support for Qatar’s Emir, who has just returned home from a trip abroad.

The crowd consisted of expats and Qataris alike, who hailed Sheikh Tamim for representing Qatar proudly during the ongoing Gulf dispute.

The Emir was first warmly received at the airport by family members and other VIPs.

Later in the evening, his convoy cruised down the Corniche, where people waited up to three hours to greet him.

Sheikh Tamim very briefly got out of his vehicle to meet with attendees, kissing children and shaking hands.

Speaking to Doha News, one Qatari woman who declined to be named said:

“I feel so proud to be here today. Us coming together like this only goes to show that we as Qataris and the residents of Qatar would never turn our backs on Sheikh Tamim.”

 

Online reaction

The event appeared to be a very emotional one for some residents. Many strongly felt the need to show up and express their patriotism as Qatar’s isolation from its neighbors grows.

Others wanted to give thanks to the Emir for his defiant speech last week at the United Nations, which expressed gratitude to Qatar’s expats and local population for their solidarity.

Here’s some of the online reaction to yesterday’s event:

Thoughts?

All photos by Ray Toh

Its doors temporarily open to visitors, Qatar’s upcoming National Museum has welcomed hundreds of curious guests in the past few weeks.

The museum is offering tours to Culture Pass members before it closes at the end of this year for exhibition installation.

It will officially make its public debut in December 2018, which is at least two years later than originally planned.

The inside

Located across from the Corniche near the Museum of Islamic Art, the National Museum has been designed to look like a desert rose growing out of the ground.

Designed by architect Jean Nouvel, and is made up of several interlocking discs that mimic the crystal formation.

Ray Toh

Qatar National Museum

According to visitors, the concept has made for a unique interior, in that it does not consist of one large space for exhibitions.

This will likely lend to some creative curation. There is also little natural light.

However, restaurant seating is slated to be outdoor and will face the sea, tour operators said.

Other offerings

Eventually, the 40,000 sq meter structure will include 8,000 sq meters of permanent exhibition space and a further 2,000 sq meters for temporary, rotating exhibitions.

The centerpiece of the National Museum was restored in 2015.

QM

Restored palace of Sheikh Abdullah bin Jassim Al-Thani

It is the palace of the former ruler and “father of modern Qatar,” Sheikh Abdullah bin Jassim Al Thani.

Al Thani lived in the palace until it became the country’s former National Museum in 1975.

The National Museum will also house a 220-seat auditorium, two restaurants and a cafe, two shops, a food forum, a research center and laboratories and a park with indigenous plants, Qatar Museums previously said.

Have you seen it yet? Thoughts?